Yesterday, the Toronto Blue Jays announced via their Twitter page that six players had been named finalists for the 2022 Silver Slugger Award.
This year, there are four finalists named to the award for each infield position (with a catching outlier) within the division, meaning the Jays nominated infielders have a 25% chance of taking home the hardware. The outfield position is a bit different, in that there are ten finalists with just three winners and it isn’t awarded per position, so it’s a bit of a tougher pool to win hardware in. Additionally, the catcher’s pool has six nominees.
Each team gets four votes for each position, with the manager and three coaches on the squad getting the honours of naming the top offensive player at each position.
That being said, let’s take a look at the Blue Jays’ nominees.
Alejandro Kirk – Catcher
Suiting up in a career-high 139 games this season, Blue Jays catcher Alejandro Kirk receives his first Silver Slugger nomination after putting forth a really strong campaign.
While his name was dangled in trade rumours this past offseason, the Mexican-born catcher was one of the top players in the Jays’ lineup this season, slotting in as the catcher and DH. He authored a .285/.372/.415 slash line with 14 home runs and 63 RBI to the tune of a .786 OPS and a 129 wRC+.
Compared to other AL catchers, he owns the highest batting average and on-base percentage while sitting second in numerous other categories such as BABIP (.299), wOBA (.347), and wRC+.
Named to his first All-Star game this year, Kirk is a strong contender for the award with his 3.8 fWAR this year but is in a tough crop of players that also features an additional three names in the ballots.